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Israel Presents Cyber Dome Defense at International Forum in Tel Aviv
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett speaks with Microsoft Corporate Vice President Michal Braverman Blumenstyk at Cyber Week 2022, Tel Aviv University, June 28, 2022. (Debbie Mohnblatt/The Media Line)

Israel Presents Cyber Dome Defense at International Forum in Tel Aviv

We are creating a global cybersecurity collaboration network, PM Bennett says

The Cyber Dome, a big data, artificial intelligence approach to proactive defense, “will elevate national cybersecurity by implementing new mechanisms in the national cyber perimeter, reducing the harm from cyberattacks at scale,” Gaby Portnoy, the director-general of the Israel National Cyber Directorate (INCD), said on Tuesday.

Portnoy spoke as he presented the organization’s newest project at the June 27-30 Cyber Week 2022 event held at Tel Aviv University by the INCD and the university’s Blavatnik Interdisciplinary Cyber Research Center.

The Cyber Dome name was chosen to draw a parallel to Israel’s successful Iron Dome air defense system.

Cyber is going to become one, if not the most prominent dimension, of future warfare

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett pointed out at the event that inevitably, “cyber is going to become one, if not the most prominent dimension, of future warfare.”

He continued, “Collaboration is always a beautiful word, but in cyber it’s vital because the same bad guys who are attacking one company, or one country are attacking at the same time a bunch of other countries. And if you can share that information, then everybody else can defend themselves.”

Israel is investing in creating a global collaboration network in the cybersecurity arena together with its allies, Bennett said. “It’s vital and we are going to pursue that,” he continued.

Anne Neuberger, the American deputy national security adviser for cyber and emerging technology, pointed out during her speech at the conference the main reasons the US is investing in cooperation with its allies on cybersecurity.

First, working together reinforces the trust and communication across countries, she stressed. Also, Neuberger continued, various “malicious attackers use many of the same techniques, so sharing information enables each of us to better protect against emerging threats.”

Lastly, she added that the international community can build norms and practices as the world has in other domains to maintain stability and prevent conflict.

This is our vision, Neuberger said, “like-minded countries working together to ensure that the global community can gain the benefits of cyberspace and avoid the harms.”

Collaboration, cooperation, and integration is the way forward

Dr. Melanie Garson, cyber policy lead for Europe, Israel, and the Middle East at the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, told The Media Line that cybersecurity is not a solo endeavor.

“Collaboration, cooperation, and integration is the way forward,” she said.

Garson added that for most countries, the greatest security threat is the perception that they are not at risk, leaving them as “low hanging fruits for cybercriminals, state-backed or not, to pick up.”

Israel in particular, she noted, has always lived in the perception of threat. “They have tightened their defenses because of the experience of threat,” she said.

Srdjan Rajcevic, minister of scientific and technological development, higher education, and information society in the Republika Srpska government, in Bosnia and Herzegovina, said his country seeks to further collaborate with Israel.

“Currently we are seeking to cooperate more with the State of Israel in terms of sharing experience and threat intelligence. We want to acquire the defense mechanism and know-how from the Israelis so that we can be better prepared for cyber incidents,” he told The Media Line.

To this end, said Rajcevic, they are cooperating with ELTA Systems, a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries, to establish the first cyber academy in the Republic of Srpska.

“Cyberwarfare is a reality, and we need to be aware of this. And if we know that cyberwarfare is here to stay, we need to be prepared,” Rajcevic stressed.

Ari Uusikartano, deputy director-general for information and documentation at the Finnish Foreign Ministry, discussed the importance of international cooperation on cybersecurity in an interview with The Media Line.

Cyber knows no limits, borders, or barriers, he said. “That is why he must have the ability to exchange information, interact, and also face the threats together. Cyber does not limit itself within the nation-state,” he said.

He added that Finland, as well as the European Union, is worried by cyberthreats coming from Russia in the context of the invasion of Ukraine and stressed the need for the EU to increase cooperation to counter these threats.

Bruno Gencarelli, head of the unit for international data flows and protection at the European Commission, said cybersecurity has become such an important issue because of the evolution of technology and of threats.

In a digital world, “crime has also become digital and borderless and that’s also why we need to cooperate on these threats,” Gencarelli told The Media Line.

Cybersecurity is now an essential part of the EU’s cooperation with all of its closest partners, “on the other side of the Atlantic, here in this region [the Middle East], including Israel of course, with countries in the Asia-Pacific area,” he added.

“It is now an integral policy to our bilateral relationships with many countries that are facing the same threats. Israel has of course the expertise, the know-how which is in the top class in the world,” Gencarelli said.

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